Hey You,

Can you stand up to Triumph The Comic Insult Dog?


Lewis LaLanne a.k.a. Note Taking Nerd #2 a.k.a. L.L. Cool Nerd

Is your personal improvement suffering because you have a fear of being criticized by others? The fear of being insulted by others?

 Bill Cosby, a noted celebrity, comedian, actor, public speaker, community activist, once said, “I do not know the #1 key to success. But the #1 key to failure, is trying to please everyone.”

This is a habit all men and women need to break out of.

You can’t go through you entire life trying to be a people pleaser. Doing this throughout your life lets the opinionated insults and subjective criticisms negatively affect you. This causes you to be overly concerned about being liked by others and freaking out if you don’t please everyone you come in contact with.

A strong desire for a high degree of popularity among everyone you meet is an unrealistic goal.

It’s not even a worthy goal. For example, you’re never gonna please people who are in favor of illegal drugs and simultaneously please people who are against the use of illegal drugs. You have to take a stance.

Either you’re in favor of the use of illegal drugs or you’re against it. By virtue of one stance or the other you’re going to naturally provoke criticism from whatever group you’re not aligning with.

You have to realize that your principles, your values and ethics play such an important part on what you stand for and the manner in which you express yourself and that tends to naturally eliminate this over emphasis on subjective criticisms and opinionated insults.

You cannot allow yourself to express yourself in a manner that is overly cautious, timid, hesitant, or lacks confidence simply because you’re afraid of being criticized by others, particularly someone who you’re romantically or sexually attracted to.

The Difference Between a Subjective Criticism and an Objective Criticism


Most criticisms can usually be put into two categories – objective and subjective.

An objective criticism is when you are being criticized for failing to exhibit behavior that you yourself agreed to exhibit or vice versa.

For example: If you signed an employment contract and you agreed to report to work at 9:00 o’ clock every morning before Monday and Friday, and then after settling in and getting comfortable with the lay of the land, you start showing up at 9:10, 9:15, 9:30, and your boss criticizes you for that, that would be an objective criticism. 

This is a valid criticism, an objective criticism.

When you agree never to smoke in one of your close friend’s residence or your parents residence and then they catch you smoking a cigar in the house, and they criticize you it, that’s an objective criticism.

Objective criticisms come when you’re being blasted for demonstrating behavior that you yourself promised not to perform.

What is a Subjective Criticism?

This is when someone criticizes you for behavior that they personally don’t care for.

Let’s say you’ve got a couple of friends who say that you eat too fast. And they criticize you for eating too fast. They might feel that way, but you’re fine with the pace at which you shovel food into your body.

That would be a subjective criticism.

Now when Dan Kennedy tells me to follow someone’s marketing because they’re doing some cool stuff, I do it. And below is an email from John Alanis, a guy who was a part of Dan’s platinum mastermind group, might even still be.

He sent an email the other night that I believe speaks directly to this topic and I’ll give it to you word for word here because I love how he drives this point home . . .

Osama Bin Laden Busted With Porn

Hey guys,

Nope, that’s not a misprint or a phony subject line. If you read the news headlines, he had a substantial stash of pornography, and apparently that’s not uncommon to find when SEAL team or Delta operators take down a band of Islamic militants.

These are the same goons who insist on dressing women from head to toe in outfits that completely cover up their bodies, beating them with steel cables, and denying women education.

Yet, in private, what they doing?

Looking at porn. Western porn.

Here’s another interesting statistic, this one not related to terrorists. Where do you think the largest consumption of porn in the U.S. is, based on data taken from adult movie rentals in hotels?

The U.S. South, otherwise known as the Bible Belt. That’s also the place where you’ll hear people campaigning against porn the most. What I’ve learned over the years from being in business and dealing with fakes, flakes, losers, charlatans and the elite few who are the real deal; when people crusade loudly against something, they’re usually doing it secretly.

The guy who doesn’t care one way or the other about porn is non-plussed about it. If he sees a hot woman doing something with her clothes off, he’s going to check it out, then get quickly bored and move onto more exciting things – like the real deal.

To him porn’s not a big deal, and he can’t imagine wasting his time watching it like an addict or crusading against it like a zealot. To him it’s other peoples business,  just like a myriad of other things.

The people I know who are most consistently successful in all areas aren’t crusaders or blowhards. They have their opinions and beliefs, and work quietly in favor of those, but they don’t divide the world up into black and white. They quietly assess each individual situation, act accordingly, and don’t tell other people how to live their lives, but do expect them to accept the consequences of their actions.

So beware the loud-mouthed crusader. What they usually crusade against they secretly indulge in, yet try to make you feel guilty for it. Stay away from them, they will never bring any good into your life.


Couldn’t have said it any better John.

People love criticizing you for an aspect of your behavior that they personally have problems with, that you personally don’t have a problem with.

Especially if it’s taboo and they’re ashamed of doing it themselves or wish they could do themselves. I believe the wishing precedes the doing. Think about these anti-gay politicians getting busted with male prostitutes.

They’re telling everyone else they’re gonna roast in hell for engaging in this sin –  classic subjective criticism and opinionated insult in and of itself – and in the meanwhile they’re having fantasies of doing it themselves until finally the fantasies aren’t enough and they act on what they want to do. And then they look like fucking idiots because they live under thumb of subjective criticisms and opinionated insults. 

Subjective criticisms could be focused on the type of clothes you wear, the fact that you talk too fast or too slow, drive a certain car “they” think you shouldn’t be driving, using language they don’t think you should be using, etc.

People are compelled to impose their personal rules and model of the world for how life should be onto you. You should never allow other people’s likes, dislikes, preferences, beliefs, attitudes, to affect how you behave, particularly if you’re satisfied with your behavior.

Ignore most, if not all subjective criticisms directed your way.

What About Opinionated Insults?

These are just harsher variations of a subjective criticisms.

When people are hurling opinionated insults at you, they’re just trying to push your buttons and see if they can get a rise out of you. And once they know that they can push your buttons, they’re gonna keep doing it. Over and over and over again.

This is why you ignore subjective criticisms and opinionated insults.

Marva Collins, a woman I deeply admire, is was introduced to me through an interview Tony Robbins did with her back in the early 90’s.

She caught Tony’s attention because of the fantastic results she was achieving as a school teacher with the public school system with the youth in the inner city of Chicago and then in her own school later on.

In the interview she talks about dealing with criticism. She feels that people who criticize her have good taste for having chosen her to criticize.

When kids come to her saying another kid has called them a name, she says, “Is your name ‘Stupid’? Then why are you answering to it? I’m beginning to think that’s your name because you’re responding to it?” and then she goes on to reinforce to the child that by reacting to people’s opinionated insults, they’re setting themselves up for massive failure.

This is a very different approach than simply punishing the child who was doing the name calling. It’s reality based. Out in the world, you don’t have a teacher you run to. You’re the only one standing guard at the door of your mind.

In the big picture, opinionated insults don’t mean shit.

They mean nothing. You see a lot of men and women letting opinions and insults affect how they behave towards others and how they express themselves to others and in affect how they carry themselves without purpose throughout their life.

Giving credence to subjective criticisms and opinionated insults creates an addiction to wanting to be liked by everyone.

The truth is, you cannot and will not be liked by everyone. Don’t even try.

“The irony of popularity is when you specifically try to be liked, more often than not, you’re not. But when you really don’t care about being liked, you find that people just adore and love you.”

Eddie Murphy

Look at Steve Jobs. From what Dexter tells me, after having plowed through the newest book Walter Isaacson wrote on him, he was not a people pleaser.

In fact, it was said that when people saw him coming down the hall at the office, they would turn around and run the other way. When somebody didn’t do something he approved of, he would explode right in the middle of a meeting calling them a dumb fuck and if memory serves right, that, “he was going to shove their own dick down their throat,” or up their ass. One of the two.

That’s not typical people pleasing behavior. Contrast that with the wanting to be liked behavior that oozed out of the regional manager character, Michael Scott, portrayed on TV by the actor Steve Carrell, in the series, “The Office”.

We all know or have known bosses like Michael Scott. These guys/gals reek of desperation and make themselves look weak because they go to such extreme extents to never be subjectively criticized or receive opinionated insults from their employees.

They’ll look the other way if you show up late. They let you leave early or take more days off than you agreed to. They put up with your excuses for not meeting quota.

The only reason their co-workers keep them in the loop and only disrespect them to a certain extent is because as the boss, they’re in a position to do favors for the employees. If the title is ever stripped, they’ll be ripped to shreds.

Steve Jobs never worried about this. His total disregard for being liked is what got him booted out of Apple in the first place. And his total disregard for subjective criticisms and opinionated insults of his management style led him to drive innovation at such an incredible level that people mourned his death world wide.

Quit Letting People Rape Your Mind

In no way, shape, or form is any kind of physical rape acceptable. But out there in the cold, sometimes a weaker person, male (prison, jail, child) or female, isn’t strong enough to protect themselves and unfortunately it happens.

And I believe that when you let subjective criticisms and opinionated insults impregnate your true essence, who you really are, you’re letting yourself be mentally raped. But I don’t believe the majority of people are too weak to defend themselves from this attack and we, as individuals need to make this mental form of rape just as unacceptable as physical rape is and need to be classify it as just as wrong and nasty as physical rape is.

Otherwise, you end up feeling like we deserve it and just start accepting it and this leads to you feeling helpless and worthless.

I believe we all have the strength to protect our minds from being raped by subjective criticisms and opinionated insults. Marva Collins insists on proving this to all the kids under her guidance, even the little 5 year old babies, that they’re strong enough to say “No!” to thoughts that don’t serve them.

Shame Busting Experiments

My little five year old niece is a little girly girl and loves bright colors and sparkle and glitter and everything that is light and feminine.

She used to not be able to paint her nails without making a god awful mess everywhere so I would do it for her. Just for fun one day, I let her paint mine.

My first inclination was to take it off after a while but around this time I’d really been playing with this idea of growing immune to what people thought of me so I left it on. For weeks.

At first I was scared and hyper conscious of what people were thinking of me wearing it . . .  “Do they think I’m gay? They must think I ‘m gay. Cover your hands somehow so no one else sees!”

But after a while, I didn’t care what people thought. I got so immune to these thoughts, resting in knowing who I am, that I forgot to pay attention to what I thought people were thinking of me because I had the polish on.

Another shame busting experiment I did was not shaving for a few months. Now some guys like my dad can grow Paul Bunyan ass beards all full and thick. Not me. I look like Rico suave when I’m shaved and look like a homeless drug addict when I’m not because my beard is all patchy and scraggly.

Didn’t care. Went everywhere like that and had fun doing so. Forgot to think of what I thought people were thinking of me. And this was a huge win for me in the war to stop being overly concerned with what strangers and friends and family thought of me.

What Can You Do To Put An End To Mental Abuse?

Now obviously your job or profession might not let go to the extremes I did.

I eventually shave to meet my sister’s in-laws for the very first time. I wasn’t going to impose my challenge on her.

I’m sure you’ve you’ve got situations like this too where you’re meeting new clients in person or what not but I can’t recommend highly enough doing something that puts you out of your comfort zone. Something you perceive would draw criticism from people you’re worried about getting criticism from.

But start small. Tim Ferriss, in the “4 Hour Workweek” talked about getting over social anxiety by laying down on the floor of Starbucks while waiting in line. This isn’t something as extreme as I did, but it’s probably extreme to you.

And my other recommendation is to do something you’ve always wanted to do and do it proudly, something you prefer doing that you’ve always been told was stupid. If you’re a macho guy who has secretly listened to Madonna your whole life, drive down the street blasting that shit full blast with the windows down singing along to it.


Take steps today to be the person that makes you feel comfortable with yourself. This means ignoring other people’s attempting to ram their holier-than-thou, cooler-than-thou expectations of your behavior into you.

Talk soon,

Lewis LaLanne a.k.a. Note Taking Nerd #2 a.k.a. L.L. Cool Nerd